Why Did the English Civil War Break Out in 1642? Essay

1061 WordsApr 30, 20155 Pages
Why did the English Civil War break out in 1642? In summer 1642 the English Civil War broke out between King Charles 1 and Parliament. At the beginning when Charles became King in 1625 he had a warm welcome from Parliament. Soon after he began to upset them, but did the English people think the arguments were so serious they would lead to civil war? There are a number of reasons why Civil War broke out. One important factor was to do with Charles and his actions towards religion. In 1625, Before Charles was even king he married a French Catholic, Henrietta Maria, who was very open about her religion. This made the people of England very worried and agitated, because if Henrietta and Charles had children, they would probably be openly Catholic too. That meant they were the heirs to the throne, and they would turn England back to being Catholic. This would be very confusing for the public, having to change religion again, not to mention how outraged Parliament were. The members of Parliament were Puritans (very strict Protestants) and were afraid Charles was moving towards Catholicism. Another point to make is that in 1633, Charles appointed William Laud as the Arch-bishop of Canterbury. William Laud made a few changes to the Anglican Church (Church of England). This was called the ‘Beautie of Holiness’. It included decoration and burning incense, which were believed to help connect to God. As you can imagine Parliament wasn’t happy with this. They didn’t just sit there being all depressed. They published leaflets criticising Laud. Charles was furious. So furious he had some of the Puritans convicted in the Court of Star Chambers for committing treason against the King. This would have been very humiliating. Then when they were found guilty they had their ears cut off and theirs cheeks branded. This caused quite a lot of friction between Charles and Parliament.
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